The following is an actual letter sent to a government minister by an irate Australian citizen.
Dear Mr Minister,
I'm in the process of renewing my passport and still cannot believe this.
How is it that K-Mart has my address and telephone number and knows that I bought a television set and golf clubs and condoms from them back in 1997 and yet the Federal Government is still asking me where I was born and on what date? For Christ sakes, do you guys do this by hand?
My birth date you have in my Medicare information and it is on all the income tax forms I've filed for the past 40 years. It is also on my driver's licence, on the last eight passports I've ever had and on all those stupid customs declaration forms I've had to fill out before being allowed off planes over the past 30 years. It's also on all those insufferable census forms that I've filled out every 5 years since 1966.
Also, would somebody please take note, once and for all, that my mother's name is Audrey, my father's name is Jack, and I'd be absolutely bloody astounded if that ever changed between now and when I drop dead! SHIT! What do you people do with all this information we keep having to provide?
I apologise, Mr Minister. But I'm really pissed off this morning. Between you and me, I've had enough of all this bullshit! You send the application to my house, then you ask me for my bloody address! What the hell is going on with your mob? Have you got a gang of mindless Neanderthal arseholes working there?
And another thing, look at my damn picture. Do I look like Bin Laden? I can't even grow a beard for God's sake. I just want to go to New Zealand and see my new granddaughter. (Yes, my son interbred with a Kiwi girl). And would someone please tell me, why would you give a shit whether or not I plan on visiting a farm in the next 15 days? In the unlikely event I ever got the urge to do something weird to a sheep or a horse, believe you me, I'd sure as hell not want to tell anyone!
Well, I have to go now, because I have to go to the other side of Sydney and get another bloody copy of my birth certificate – and to part with another $80 for the privilege of accessing MY OWN INFORMATION!
Would it be so complicated to have all the services in the same spot, to assist in the issuance of a new passport on the same day? Nooooo…that'd be too bloody easy and makes far too much sense. You would much prefer to have us running all over the bloody place like chickens with our heads cut off, and then having to find some 'high-society' wanker to confirm that it's really me in the goddamn photo! You know the photo - the one where we're not allowed to smile? You bloody morons.
Signed – An Irate Australian Citizen.
PS. Remember what I said above about the picture, and getting someone in 'high-society' to confirm that it's me? Well, my family has been in this country since before 1820! In 1856, one of my forefathers took up arms with Peter Lalor. (You do remember the Eureka Stockade!)
I have also served in both the CMF and regular Army for something over 30 years (I went to Vietnam in 1967) and still have high security clearances. I'm also a personal friend of the president of the RSL. Lt General Peter Cosgrove sends me a Christmas card each year.
However, your rules require that I have to get someone "important" to verify who I am; you know - someone like my doctor - WHO WAS BORN AND RAISED IN BLOODY PAKISTAN! - a country where they either assassinate or hang their ex-Prime Ministers and are suspended from the Commonwealth and United Nations for not having the "right sort of government".
You are all pen-pushing paper-shuffling bloody idiots.
Dihydrogen Monoxide (DHMO) is a colourless and odourless chemical compound, also referred to by some as Dihydrogen Oxide, Hydrogen Hydroxide, Hydronium Hydroxide, or simply Hydric acid.
Its basis is the highly reactive hydroxyl radical, a species shown to mutate DNA, denature proteins, disrupt cell membranes, and chemically alter critical neurotransmitters. The atomic components of DHMO are found in a number of caustic, explosive and poisonous compounds such as Sulphuric Acid, Nitroglycerine and Ethyl Alcohol.
Yes, you should be concerned about DHMO! Although the US Government and the Centres for Disease Control (CDC) do not classify Dihydrogen Monoxide as a toxic or carcinogenic substance (as it does with better known chemicals such as hydrochloric acid and benzene), DHMO is a constituent of many known toxic substances, diseases and disease-causing agents, environmental hazards and can even be lethal to humans in quantities as small as a thimbleful.
Research conducted by award-winning US scientist Nathan Zohner concluded that roughly 86% of the population supports a ban on dihydrogen monoxide. Although his results are preliminary, Zohner believes people need to pay closer attention to the information presented to them regarding Dihydrogen Monoxide. He adds that if more people knew the truth about DHMO, then studies like the one he conducted would not be necessary.
A similar study conducted by US researchers Patrick K McCluskey and Matthew Kulick also found that nearly 90% of the citizens participating in their study were willing to sign a petition to support an outright ban on the use of Dihydrogen Monoxide in the United States.
Good question. Historically, the dangers of DHMO, for the most part, have been considered minor and manageable. While the more significant dangers of Dihydrogen Monoxide are currently addressed by a number of agencies including FDA, FEMA and CDC, public awareness of the real and daily dangers of Dihydrogen Monoxide is lower than some think it should be.
Critics of government often cite the fact that many politicians and others in public office do not consider Dihydrogen Monoxide to be a "politically beneficial" cause to get behind and so the public suffers from a lack of reliable information on just what DHMO is and why they should be concerned. Part of the blame lies with the public and society at large. Many do not take the time to understand Dihydrogen Monoxide, and what it means to their lives and the lives of their families.
Unfortunately, the dangers of DHMO have increased as world population has increased, a fact that the raw numbers and careful research both bear out. Now more than ever, it is important to be aware of just what the dangers of Dihydrogen Monoxide are and how we can all reduce the risks faced by ourselves and our families.
Each year, Dihydrogen Monoxide is a known causative component in many thousands of deaths and is a major contributor to millions upon millions of dollars in damage to property and the environment. Some of the known perils of Dihydrogen Monoxide are:
Despite the known dangers of DHMO, it continues to be used daily by industry, government, and even in private homes across the USA and worldwide. Some of the well-known uses of Dihydrogen Monoxide are:
What you may find surprising are some of the products and places where DHMO is used, but which for one reason or another, are not normally made part of public presentations on the dangers to the lives of our family members and friends. Among these startling uses are:
One of the most surprising facts recently revealed about Dihydrogen Monoxide contamination is in its use as a food and produce "decontaminant." Studies have shown that even after careful washing, food and produce that has been contaminated by DHMO remains tainted by DHMO.
A recent stunning revelation is that in every single instance of violence in our country's schools, including infamous shootings in high schools in Denver and Arkansas, Dihydrogen Monoxide was involved. In fact, DHMO is often very available to students of all ages within the assumed safe confines of school buildings. None of the school administrators with which we spoke could say for certain how much of the substance is in use within their very hallways.
Unfortunately, DHMO overdose is not unheard of in patients undergoing dialysis treatments for kidney failure. Dihydrogen Monoxide overdose in these patients can result in congestive heart failure, pulmonary oedema and hypertension. In spite of the danger of accidental overdose and the inherent toxicity of DHMO in large quantities for this group, there is a portion of the dialysis treated population that continues to use DHMO on a regular basis.
In spite of overwhelming evidence, there is one group in California that opposes a ban on Dihydrogen Monoxide. The Friends of Hydrogen Hydroxide is a group that believes that the dangers of DHMO have been exaggerated. Members claim that Dihydrogen Monoxide, or the less emotionally charged and more chemically accurate term they advocate for it, "Hydrogen Hydroxide," is beneficial, environmentally safe, benign and naturally occurring. They argue that efforts to ban DHMO are misguided.
Friends of Hydrogen Hydroxide is supported by the Scorched Earth Party, a radical and loosely-organised California-based group. Sources close to the Scorched Earth Party deny any outside funding from government, industry or pro-industry PACs.
For the most part, the press has not reported on the dangers of Dihydrogen Monoxide as much as some would like. Although many private individuals have put up web sites in a major grassroots effort to spread the word, major publications have not.
Recently, attention has been paid to the subject thanks to an incident in Aliso Viejo, California. This so-called Aliso Viejo Incident was widely reported in the media, although the director of DHMO.org, Dr. Tom Way, was called a "prankster." Once the Associated Press started circulating the story, it became fact, and the valuable information being provided by the DHMO.org website was deemed to be "rubbish" rather than an honest and unbiased recounting of facts about a dangerous, life-endangering chemical compound.